Many ask which front fork we recommend and what the differences are so we thought we would provide some details to help better answer this question.

The 48 mm Sachs fork that comes on all standard RR and RS models is an open cartridge design. An open cartridge fork means it has one oil chamber. The oil that lubricates the slider bushings is the same oil that is forced through the compression and rebound pistons. Open cartridge forks tend to be more “plush” and work very well for A, B, and C level riders. Beta has been developing this fork every year since 2012. There have been many changes including piston diameter and cartridge design to enhance the fork performance.

 

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The 48 mm Marzocchi fork that comes on RR Race Editions is a closed cartridge design. Closed cartridge forks utilize two separate oil chambers, one to lubricate the bushings and provide a proper “air gap” while the second oil is sealed inside the inner chamber for the rebound and compression pistons. This fork is called a “Factory” fork as it has hard anodized tubes as well as hard anodized internal parts. The Marzocchi fork is intended for racing therefore is valved for “race speeds”. It is designed to be used by AA and top level A racers.

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With this in mind, under most cases, it is better to sell a standard RR model to play riders as the open cartridge fork is more compliant and will perform better for his or her riding capability. It would be like driving a Ferrari to and from work when you live in stop and go traffic. The Marzocchi race fork performs its best at higher speeds, not only MPH but when it is hitting bumps, rocks, etc at a higher rate of speed. Some B and C level riders will complain about this fork as being too harsh.

 

As all suspension, proper spring rates, proper torque of the triple clamp bolts, oil level, and proper axle alignment are very important. Any one of these items that are not at the factory specs will alter the fork’s performance.

 

One other item that plays a very large role in suspension performance is the air gap, it is the amount of air left at the top of the stroke when the fork is compressed. The air gap affects bottoming resistance as well as the harshness of the fork at the end of its stroke. As the oil level is raised, the air gap is decreased causing more bottoming resistance.

Contact me for more information if needed.